A Marshall Plan for Mexico
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Bill Clinton's chief-of-staff, now a Washington insider, has just proposed a Marshall Plan of subsidies for Mexico:

"Thomas McLarty said the United States should partner with Mexico, and to a lesser degree with Canada, in a 'Marshall Plan' effort — named for the U.S. aid offensive for a ravaged Europe after World War Two — that could inspire Mexico's work force to remain at home. "'In Mexico, we need to consider some type of Marshall Plan,' McLarty told a Latin American energy conference in a San Diego suburb. McLarty said the three countries could provide $20 billion in development aid over a 10-year period. "'That sounds like a lot of money, and it is,' said McLarty, who served as White House chief of staff from 1993 to 1994 and is now a consultant. 'Consider that the United States spent $100 billion in Iraq in just this past year. Unless we help out our neighbors to the south, and especially Mexico, we will continue to have this issue of immigration which will hurt our relations.'"

A week before 9/11, I kicked the same idea around in VDARE.COM in my article "A Marshall Plan for Mexico."

The obvious problems, of course, is that so much of the money would likely end up in the Swiss bank accounts of the Mexican ruling class that it would have no effect on the immigration rate.

So, I proposed a mechanism to make the subsidy dependent upon Mexico cutting the number of border crossers:

"Mexico needs help if it's ever to be a good neighbor to the U.S. Our political establishment's plan for helping Mexico is to take even more unemployed Mexicans off Fox's hands. The moral problem with this plan, among others, is that most of the burden of helping Mexico this way falls on those Americans least able to afford it.

"A better solution would be to put more of the burden of helping Mexico on American taxpayers. The progressive income tax means that the costs would fall more on the right half of the American bell curve, who can afford it, rather than on the left half.

"We should demand that Fox use his military to police his northern border regions against Mexicans trying to illegally enter America as vigorously as he's doing on his southern border. In return for quantified cuts in illegal immigration from Mexico, we would offer a Marshall Plan-type arrangement to help Mexicans stay in Mexico. For example, we could offer Fox $4 for every $1 that private remittances from Mexicans resident in the US decline. So, if Fox helped cut the number of Mexican illegals in the US by enough that the amount of money wired home fell from $7 billion to $4 billion per year, we'd give him $12 billion. To us, that's a pittance to pay annually to help solve a pressing social problem."

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